Bank of England/TNS Inflation Attitudes Survey - February 2020

This quarterly survey, conducted by TNS on our behalf, assesses public attitudes to inflation, opinions about the Bank and awareness of our work.
Published on 20 March 2020
This news release describes the results of the Bank of England’s latest quarterly survey of public attitudes to inflation, undertaken between 12 and 25 February 2020.

Highlights from the Survey

Question 1: Asked to give the current rate of inflation, respondents gave a median answer of 2.8%, compared to 2.9% in November.

Question 2a: Median expectations of the rate of inflation over the coming year were 3.0%, down from 3.1% in November. 

Question 2b: Asked about expected inflation in the twelve months after that, respondents gave a median answer of 2.9%, remaining the same as in November.

Question 2c: Asked about expectations of inflation in the longer term, say in five years’ time, respondents gave a median answer of 3.4%, down from 3.6% in November. 

Question 3: By a margin of 47% to 10%, survey respondents believed that the economy would end up weaker rather than stronger if prices started to rise faster, compared with 52% to 7% in November. 

Question 4: 52% of respondents thought the inflation target was ‘about right’, remaining the same as in November. The proportions saying the target was ‘too high’ or ‘too low’ were 19% and 9%, respectively. 

Question 5: 12% of respondents thought that interest rates had fallen over the past 12 months, compared with 11% in November, while 27% of respondents said that interest rates had risen over the past 12 months, remaining the same as in November.

Question 6: When asked about the future path of interest rates, 29% said they expected rates to stay about the same over the next twelve months, compared with 26% in November. 39% of respondents expected rates to rise over the next 12 months, remaining the same as in November. 

Question 7: Asked what would be ‘best for the economy’ – higher interest rates, lower rates or no change – 17% thought rates should ‘go up’, up from 16% in November. 16% of respondents thought that interest rates should ‘go down’, down from 18% in November. 37% thought interest rates should ‘stay where they are’, up from 35% in November.

Question 8: When asked what would be ‘best for you personally’, 20% of respondents said it would be better for them if interest rates were to ‘go up’, unchanged from November. 26% of respondents said it would be better for them if interest rates were to ‘go down’, down slightly from 27% in November. 

Question 14: Respondents were asked to assess the way the Bank of England is ‘doing its job to set interest rates to control inflation’. The net satisfaction balance – the proportion satisfied minus the proportion dissatisfied – was +29%, down slightly from +30% in November.

ExcelSummary results

ExcelDetailed survey results

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